Five great hikes to do in and around Dublin for when the weather eventually picks up
When some slightly better weather arrives (if ever), here's some tips to help get a little bit more outdoors-y.
At the start of the year, I decided to start a #OneHikeAWeek resolution, and while bad weather and just general life-living has stopped me from sticking to it too strictly, I have done ten hikes since the New Year kicked off.
Primarily I did them because I wanted to get a little fitter but I absolutely hate going to the gym, so this seemed like a reasonable middle-ground, plus it can make your Instagram game look el fuego, should you be so inclined.
So here are the five hikes I would recommend, from very easy to quite tough, to help you be more active and get some Vitamin D while you're at it.
MALAHIDE CASTLE GROUNDS
How to get there? DART brings you within five minutes of the entrance.
How long is it? A full walk around the grounds is about 4kms, so you'll probably do a full lap in about an hour. To be honest, it really is more of a walk than an actual hike, but its a good one to get started off with. Plus there are work-out stations every few hundred meters along the path so you can break up the walk with mini sessions of push ups and pull ups and stuff if that happens to be your bag.
Anything else to do there? Well, there's the castle, which is a major tourist attraction on its own. Plus there's shops and stuff on the grounds, and then there's Malahide sea-front if you wanted to have a wonder around the town.
BRAY TO GREYSTONES
How to get there? DART to Bray, and then return from Greystones. Simples.
How long is it? About 6.5 Kms, so it should take you about an hour and a half. This is your first baby step towards proper hiking, so go team you! You can climb the head and go back down the other side, but there's an actual path that brings you along the waterfront and straight out the Greystones harbour that is much more visually interesting.
Anything else to do there? Bray is pretty famous for there beach-front ice-cream parlours, so you could get a pre-hike treat for yourself. Then in Greystones there's lots of little bars and restaurants for a, well, post-hike treat for yourself. Hey, you just hiked, so you deserve to treat yourself as much as you want!
DALKEY TO KILLINEY
How to get there? Once again, the DART is your best friend.
How long is it? This one isn't as easy to answer, because truth be told, we kept wandering off the direct road to stick along the very pretty coast, and ending up in massive bush-y cul-de-sacs with a group of tourists who had foolishly thought we knew where we were going. Lets say it was also about 90 mins, although if you know where you're going, it could be closer to an hour.
Anything else to do out there? We were playing "Guess Which House Is Enya's?" the whole way, because each mansion seemed to out-mansion the previous mansion. Plus once we got to Killiney beach, we were greeted by a host of very naked men, because apparently it is a nude beach. So... there's that.
How to get there? I've yet to figure out any form of public transport that goes anywhere near it, so for now it seems to be accessible only to those with cars.
How long is it? Up to 10km, depending on which route you decide to take, so prepare to lose over two hours to this. The first twenty minutes or so seems to be all incline too, so this is where the hikes start to take it up a notch. But think of the glutes. THINK OF THE GLUTES!
Anything else to do out there? Not really, no. Like we said, it does appear to be in the middle of nowhere, so if you were hoping for a little brunch outlet close-by, we've got some bad news for you. Thankfully, if you've taken our advice, then you'll have driven out there, so you can drive somewhere for you food. Problem solved!
How to get there? The 145 bus leaves you pretty much at the base of the walk, or (again) the DART leaves you a few minutes away
How long is it? Well, technically this is a looped walk, so however far you decide to go, double that for the total. The first bit seems almost too easy, and is very picturesque, but it's not long before you practically walking vertically on the way up to the Lead Mines Chimney at the top of the mountain and you'll start to question whether or not you should have brought some breathing equipment along with you.
Anything else to do out there? The Chimney itself will warrant a little look around, as will the forest landscape around it (lots of wildlife to be seen), plus we're sure you can find somewhere to eat and/or drink in Shankill once you've made it back down the mountain.